Amy's Reviews > The Tsar's Dwarf

The Tsar's Dwarf by Peter H. Fogtdal
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's review
Aug 23, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: amazon-vine, 2008-books-read
Read in September, 2008

The Russian Tsar Peter the Great collects dwarves like some people collect stamps. So when he visits Denmark, the Danish king has a complimentary dwarf jump out of a cake for his pleasure. Only, this is an ugly little dwarf named Sorine with a mind of her own. And, to the tsar's amusement she's jumped out of the cake naked.

Sorine becomes Surinka and goes to Russia to become part of the tsars collection of dwarves. The tsar has even built a dwarf-sized house for his little pets. Sorine a.k.a. Surinka is not amused. And she decks the first dwarf that tries to get her to sleep with him in his dwarf-sized bed.

It all sounds amusing, but Sorine is far from amused with her station in life. She's grumpy, ornery, and speaks her mind. Life hasn't been good to her, but part of this is her fault for pushing away the people in her life who have tried to show her affection. As she grows older, we watch the emotional walls she's erected around herself crumble.

I found myself enjoying this book much more than I thought I would. It's a pleasant, mindless read. Some might see the story as being a dark one, but I found more humor than darkness. Besides, what's a Russian setting without morosity? And I did enjoyed the psychotic character of the tsar and the grumpy character of the dwarf quite a lot.

Also, I have to say that I wish the cover of every paperback book was made like this one with expandable French flaps that function as built-in bookmarks.

Note: While I critique both purchased and free books in the same way, I'm legally obligated to tell you I received this book free through the Amazon Vine program in return for my review. Blah blah blah.

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Quotes Amy Liked

Peter H. Fogtdal
“I'm going to die. And as if that weren't bad enough, I'm going to die inside a cake.”
Peter H. Fogtdal, The Tsar's Dwarf

Peter H. Fogtdal
“In my carpet bag are the mushrooms that I gathered in the woods. With two fingers I pick up a piece and look at it. Then I take a bite and wait for my body to react. Now I'm in a better mood. In a short time I'll be dead. Or alive. I'm not always sure that there's any difference.”
Peter H. Fogtdal, The Tsar's Dwarf

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